Sumitomo Corporation will mark the 100th anniversary of its founding in 2019. It is planning to relocate its headquarters in the fall of 2018, with a planned IT overhaul at the same time. The “Work Reform and Headquarters Relocation Team” of the IT planning and promotion division will play a central role in this process. They work on infrastructure improvements to administer everything related to IT and demonstrate the collective power of the group.
Akiyoshi Yamada, Director of IT Planning and Promotion, manages the deployment of the new IT infrastructure, along with the simultaneous successful completion of the headquarters relocation. “The promotion of communication and collaboration is necessary in order to demonstrate the collective power of our group, and strengthening of the IT infrastructure is essential for its promotion. We want the employees to leverage the newly improved infrastructure as ‘earning power’. Furthermore, we expect that incorporating the latest technology, such as AI and the IoT, will contribute to the creation of new business.”
Another reason behind the encouragement of IT utilization by Sumitomo Corporation was the recommendation of “work reform” included as one of the strategic policies by the government. “We also intend to make it possible for each and every employee to be able to work according to his or her lifestyle with the help of IT equipment, regardless of the time or place,” said Koichi Taniguchi, Team Leader of Work Reform and Headquarters Relocation. At Sumitomo Corporation, a large number of devices, especially for salespeople, are carried outside of the company. Preventing the leak of sensitive information sits at the top of their agenda. In addition, due to the need of large-scale collaboration between divisions within the group, a solution was needed to ensure secure information sharing among everybody involved in a project. Building an infrastructure that was secure and encrypted was therefore crucial to prevent eavesdropping.
“We chose Pulse Secure’s PSA Series as our SSL-VPN solution for accessing company data remotely,” said Hisashi Mitsunaga, a member of the same team. “Besides previous performance, the number one reason was the confidence that Pulse Secure is a market leader. In addition, because we are a global company, stable support with a global basis for overseas expansion was important to us.” With operations in 65 countries around the world, a total of 5 installations were completed in Tokyo, New York, and London, which could be called the focus of the global basis.
He said that the switch to the next-generation models went smoothly because of the performance history of Pulse Secure. When asked about the advantages of deploying their products, he said that “because the Pulse Secure client is easy to connect, and it’s tied to a password, once you finish the authentication, you don’t have to input the password every time. The feedback from employees showed that it’s extremely easy to use. In addition, the administrators who are actually using the current system said that there are few hardware failures and that the administrator screen is easy to use,” he emphasized that it is easy to use for both employees and administrators. He is very confident that everything is ready for the switch to the PSA Series at the end of February 2018, with a deployment period of 10 months.